Motivational Disturbances and Effects of L-Dopa Administration in Neurofibromatosis-1 Model Mice.

Motivational Disturbances and Effects of L-dopa Administration in Neurofibromatosis-1 Model Mice.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(6): e66024
Wozniak DF, Diggs-Andrews KA, Conyers S, Yuede CM, Dearborn JT, Brown JA, Tokuda K, Izumi Y, Zorumski CF, Gutmann DH

Children with neurofibromatosis type 1 (NF1) frequently have cognitive and behavioral deficits. Some of these deficits have been successfully modeled in Nf1 genetically-engineered mice that develop optic gliomas (Nf1 OPG mice). In the current study, we show that abnormal motivational influences affect the behavior of Nf1 OPG mice, particularly with regard to their response to novel environmental stimuli. For example, Nf1 OPG mice made fewer spontaneous alternations in a Y-maze and fewer arm entries relative to WT controls. However, analysis of normalized alternation data demonstrated that these differences were not due to a spatial working memory deficit. Other reported behavioral results (e.g., open-field test, below) suggest that differential responses to novelty and/or other motivational influences may be more important determinants of these kinds of behavior than simple differences in locomotor activity/spontaneous movements. Importantly, normal long-term depression was observed in hippocampal slices from Nf1 OPG mice. Results from elevated plus maze testing showed that differences in exploratory activity between Nf1 OPG and WT control mice may be dependent on the environmental context (e.g., threatening or non-threatening) under which exploration is being measured. Nf1 OPG mice also exhibited decreased exploratory hole poking in a novel holeboard and showed abnormal olfactory preferences, although L-dopa (50 mg/kg) administration resolved the abnormal olfactory preference behaviors. Nf1 OPG mice displayed an attenuated response to a novel open field in terms of decreased ambulatory activity and rearing but only during the first 10 min of the session. Importantly, Nf1 OPG mice demonstrated investigative rearing deficits with regard to a novel hanging object suspended on one side of the field which were not rescued by L-dopa administration. Collectively, our results provide new data important for evaluating therapeutic treatments aimed at ameliorating NF1-associated cognitive/behavioral deficits. HubMed – depression


Disability mediates the impact of common conditions on perceived health.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(6): e65858
Alonso J, Vilagut G, Adroher ND, Chatterji S, He Y, Andrade LH, Bromet E, Bruffaerts R, Fayyad J, Florescu S, de Girolamo G, Gureje O, Haro JM, Hinkov H, Hu C, Iwata N, Lee S, Levinson D, Lépine JP, Matschinger H, Medina-Mora ME, O’Neill S, Hormel J, Posada-Villa JA, Ismet Taib N, Xavier M, Kessler RC

We examined the extent to which disability mediates the observed associations of common mental and physical conditions with perceived health.WHO World Mental Health (WMH) Surveys carried out in 22 countries worldwide (n?=?51,344 respondents, 72.0% response rate). We assessed nine common mental conditions with the WHO Composite International Diagnostic Interview (CIDI), and ten chronic physical with a checklist. A visual analog scale (VAS) score (0, worst to 100, best) measured perceived health in the previous 30 days. Disability was assessed using a modified WHO Disability Assessment Schedule (WHODAS), including: cognition, mobility, self-care, getting along, role functioning (life activities), family burden, stigma, and discrimination. Path analysis was used to estimate total effects of conditions on perceived health VAS and their separate direct and indirect (through the WHODAS dimensions) effects. Twelve-month prevalence was 14.4% for any mental and 51.4% for any physical condition. 31.7% of respondents reported difficulties in role functioning, 11.4% in mobility, 8.3% in stigma, 8.1% in family burden and 6.9% in cognition. Other difficulties were much less common. Mean VAS score was 81.0 (SD?=?0.1). Decrements in VAS scores were highest for neurological conditions (9.8), depression (8.2) and bipolar disorder (8.1). Across conditions, 36.8% (IQR: 31.2-51.5%) of the total decrement in perceived health associated with the condition were mediated by WHODAS disabilities (significant for 17 of 19 conditions). Role functioning was the dominant mediator for both mental and physical conditions. Stigma and family burden were also important mediators for mental conditions, and mobility for physical conditions.More than a third of the decrement in perceived health associated with common conditions is mediated by disability. Although the decrement is similar for physical and mental conditions, the pattern of mediation is different. Research is needed on the benefits for perceived health of targeted interventions aimed at particular disability dimensions. HubMed – depression


Prevalent Hallucinations during Medical Internships: Phantom Vibration and Ringing Syndromes.

PLoS One. 2013; 8(6): e65152
Lin YH, Lin SH, Li P, Huang WL, Chen CY

Phantom vibration syndrome is a type of hallucination reported among mobile phone users in the general population. Another similar perception, phantom ringing syndrome, has not been previously described in the medical literature.A prospective longitudinal study of 74 medical interns (46 males, 28 females; mean age, 24.8±1.2 years) was conducted using repeated investigations of the prevalence and associated factors of phantom vibration and ringing. The accompanying symptoms of anxiety and depression were evaluated with the Beck Anxiety and Depression Inventories before the internship began, and again at the third, sixth, and twelfth internship months, and two weeks after the internship ended.The baseline prevalence of phantom vibration was 78.1%, which increased to 95.9% and 93.2% in the third and sixth internship months. The prevalence returned to 80.8% at the twelfth month and decreased to 50.0% 2 weeks after the internship ended. The baseline prevalence of phantom ringing was 27.4%, which increased to 84.9%, 87.7%, and 86.3% in the third, sixth, and twelfth internship months, respectively. This returned to 54.2% two weeks after the internship ended. The anxiety and depression scores also increased during the internship, and returned to baseline two weeks after the internship. There was no significant correlation between phantom vibration/ringing and symptoms of anxiety or depression. The incidence of both phantom vibration and ringing syndromes significantly increased during the internship, and subsequent recovery.This study suggests that phantom vibration and ringing might be entities that are independent of anxiety or depression during evaluation of stress-associated experiences during medical internships. HubMed – depression